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There is only one problem. Lane

Lane is a delightful character. In the series, viewers watch as she progresses through junior high, high school, and college. She is sweet and funny and kind and awkward. She also is a HUGE fan of all sorts of rock music – music of which her mother would never approve.

Lane’s solution to her mother’s disapproval is to hide everything. She wears band t-shirts under her proper sweaters and stashes CDs under floor boards in her bedroom. Unbeknownst to her mom, she is an aspiring drummer, wanting desperately to belong to this world of rock and roll.

A sad scene in the show occurs when Mrs. Kim finally finds Lane's hidden stash of music. As she uncovers piles of posters, music, t-shirts and more, she realizes that she does not know her daughter at all. In her efforts to protect Lane and keep her from harm, she has created a huge chasm that was now almost impossible to cross. Despite her mother's best efforts, Lane has indeed discovered the world and left her mom far behind.

In my experience, I have encountered two types of parenting. There is the permissive parent who desperately wants to be liked by her child. She will shrug off questionable choices and bad behavior by saying, “That’s what kids are doing these days.” She wants to stay friends with her child and be considered a “cool” parent – so she allows her pre-teen to participate in behaviors that are risky and even beyond her years.

More often, in conservative circles, I’ve met a lot more parents like Mrs. Kim. They think they can shelter their child through the precarious teenage years. They think if they do not allow them to see secular movies or hear popular music that their child will be saved from spiritual and emotional harm.

In many ways, I think that this extremely protective stance can be as dangerous as the permissive one. The pre-teen years in particular are a time of growth, mentally, socially and spiritually. As your offspring moves from childhood to adulthood, he is trying out his independence. He wants to know not just what you like, but what he is on his own. He needs to make mistakes. He needs to try things that you don’t enjoy. He needs to become his own person.

For Lane, that meant listening to rock music. Mrs. Kim, in her effort to keep Lane away from danger, actually pushed her away from herself. She allowed Lane to create an entirely separate world away from parental influence.

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